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Notes from Maggie

Option 1 - Completely new Rubric. It is a complete redo of the rubric to focus on a student engagement framework. Though some concepts from the other rubric are included, they are framed in a different manner. In addition, other parts of the old rubric are not included at all (i.e., UI interface and general content/learning materials—though content is included in several of the engagement rubric pieces).

• Is more tuned to student engagement and may be more easily applied across our four new groupings.
• Focuses on a more constructivist model, particularly in the "Excellent" category.
• Every criteria speaks to interactivity. There is no "static" environment in this rubric.
• Student engagement is what we are striving for in both the classroom and online, so attempting to measure it is forward thinking and innovative in itself.

• Requires a much more technology savvy orientation.
• Requires judges to have a much deeper look at the course materials and interactions. There isn't any "counting" or straight is it there standards.
• Requires applicants to provide more detailed operational information and reveal their practices (e.g., turnaround time for messages, looking at the quality of student participation in every aspect).
• May not be as easily applied to basic skills content (i.e., elementary skills in reading, writing, math)

Option 2 - Old Rubric with Slight Modification. Keeps the old rubric as it was but adds a "student engagement" piece that attempts to get at the most important measure of engagement—participation.

• People are used to the old rubric and only need to learn one more criteria.
• Keeps some of the basic course design stuff as it was (e.g., learn outcomes and assessment, basic navigation UI, and accessibility)
• Easier for judges to evaluate because it is a lot of basic comparison (e.g., are there objectives and are they stated).
• Closer to the Quality Matters approach.

• Still relies too much on undergraduate education (need to remove that for K-12).
• Still tends toward a tool-based approach for each criteria instead of a more holistic approach.
• Uses what I would term "old" standards in the literature, standards that are discrete instead of holistic.

Option 3 - Some Combination of the Two Options

I didn't develop this, but somewhat assume it may be our outcome. I need to hear your feedback and discussion before I continue.

Notes for Rubric

Link to current Rubric:

Notes to Consider:

  • How to incorporate categories or innovation in the rubrics?
  • Add innovation to every item?
  • Projects and portfolios might require different criteria
  • Should we try to have a general rubric or differentiated ones for each categories?

General Notes: (Please List)

Here is a re-creation of the rubric.  Proposed changes are indicated in italics


The intent of the Teaching With Sakai Innovation Award (TWSIA) is to recognize excellence in teaching and learning. 

The TWSIA committee defines an innovative course or educational experience as one that by design engages and challenges students and that leads to greater student interest, a deeper level of understanding and/or a lasting change in the perception of an issue or topic.

The innovative method, practice or strategy used may not be new in the world, but its implementation may be out of the ordinary in your field of practice or new to you. It is more than simply using new technologies; rather it is an approach to teaching and learning than results in a much-enhanced, even transformative, educational experience for students.

It is assumed that courses submitted for the award would meet or exceed the criteria for an effective course in each of the categories below while demonstrating innovation in at least one or more categories.

Eligibility Requirements:

        All faculty and those who teach with Sakai in Higher Ed or K-12 in an accredited school around the world are invited to apply
        The course must be using at least one of the Sakai CLE tools
        The course may be offered as a totally distance learning course, in-class or as a hybrid using both modes of instruction.

Rubric to Reflect New Categories:

  • K-12
  • Fully Online/Hybrid
  • Higher Education (Traditional Submissions)
  • Non-Course Sites (Project Sites and Portfolios)
  • Criteria    (Categories)

    Not Evident   (Somewhat Effective)



    Innovative Practice

    Communication and Collaboration

    The course offers limited or no opportunity for communication
    student to student, student to instructor and student to content.

    The course provides an opportunity for student introductions, exchange of  personal information. It fosters student collaboration in informal and/or graded contexts. Technologies and strategies are clearly identified to facilitate the collaborative, learning community environment.

    Multiple technology options are provided for collaboration and community building throughout the course, as a requirement of participation and excelling in the course. Instructional activities focus on learner input and reward paired or group interaction both inside and outside the course. Student reflection on their learning and the collaborative dynamic is encouraged.

    If you believe your practice is innovative in this category, describe how it is innovative.

    Learning Material

    The course provides few structural or easily identifiable learning components, and/or navigation is difficult such that the components are not easily found. Learning activities
    are absent or unclear. Sequencing and expectations around access and use of materials are absent or unclear.

    Key components of the course content are identified and easily accessible, such as the Syllabus, a reading list, assignments and due dates, basic contact information.
    Instructions as to sequencing and expectations are provided. Basic resources are provided to meaningfully enhance the content.

    Via the visual design, as well as written material, students can clearly understand all components, structure, sequencing, and  expectations. Roles are clearly delineated both in written and visual form. Resources are provided to address the content in
    multiple ways, taking into account student learning styles or abilities and levels.

    If you believe your practice is innovative in this category, describe how it is innovative.

    Learning Outcomes and Assessment

    Learning objectives/outcomes are vague or incomplete. Course provides limited or no activities to help students develop critical
    thinking/judgment, problem solving skills, and digital literacy. Course has limited activities to assess student
    learning. Opportunities for students to receive feedback about their own performance are infrequent and sporadic.

    Course goals/ outcomes are clearly defined and aligned with content.
    Course offers some activities based on some of the 7 principles for good practice in undergraduate education.
    Provides several activities to develop critical thinking/ judgment, problem solving
    skills, and digital literacy.
    Assessment strategies are used to
    measure content, knowledge,
    attitudes, and skills. Opportunity is provided for student feedback about their own performance. Students are encouraged to share their knowledge with others.

    Course goals/ outcomes are clearly defined and aligned with content.Course provides ample activities based on all of the 7 principles for
    good practice in undergraduate education. Interaction and communication between students, peers, faculty, and content are
    provided in a variety of ways with choices sometimes available. Activities to help students gain critical thinking/judgment and
    problem-solving skills are integrated into every aspect of the course.
    Multiple assessment strategies,including ones that attend to student styles and needs, are used to measure content knowledge, attitudes, and skills. Feedback about student performance is frequent and timely throughout the course, and provides clear opportunities for improvement and encouragement to excel. Students are required to become self-reflective learners and are given feedback on their reflection. Other forms of
    feedback such as peer review or feedback from experts is encouraged.
    Students are encouraged to generate course content using traditional or new media.

    If you believe your practice is innovative in this category, describe how it is innovative.

    Course Look and Feel, and Web Usability

    Much or some of the course is under construction, or key components are missing. Aesthetic design does not
    present and communicate course information clearly. Accessibility issues are not addressed.

    Appropriate tools are selected and
    identified for student navigation.
    There are no major usability issues. Different medias are used to present information to students. Accessibility issues are briefly addressed.

    Course is well-organized and easy to navigate. Aesthetic design enhances both the presentation and the communication of key information throughout the course. All web pages are visually, functionally, and aesthetically consistent to aid in course navigation. Different types of
    medias are used to suit best the nature of the content to be communicated.  Accessibility issues are addressed throughout the course.

    If you believe your practice is innovative in this category, describe how it is innovative.

    Learner Support

    Course contains limited or no
    information for online support and/or links to campus resources.

    Course contains basic information for online support and links to campus and/or course-specific resources.

    Course contains extensive information about the online and/or campus environment and
    requirements for this particular course. A variety of resources and contact information is clearly
    presented. On the fly support material is developed throughout the semester if needed.

    If you believe your practice is innovative in this category, describe how it is innovative.